Med Drone Flies in Ghana

Med Drone Flies in Ghana

Zipline and the Ghanaian government have launched a drone delivery network in Ghana. Operating from four distribution centers, Zipline drones will deliver vaccines, blood, and medications to health facilities in remote areas. The U.S. company plans to conduct 600 flights each day. According to Zipline co-founder and CEO Keller Rinaudo, it will be the “largest drone delivery network on the planet.”

Here’s the scoop direct from Zipline:

Since we launched in Rwanda in October 2016, Zipline has been making lifesaving deliveries every day. Dozens of hospitals and health facilities now rely on Zipline’s vital service to improve patient care. Our drones now cover the country, giving doctors instant access to critical medical products, like blood and vaccines, that were previously out of reach.

Because of Zipline, thousands of children will grow up with their mothers, women who would have otherwise lost too much blood due to postpartum hemorrhage. Our rapid response times and ability to deliver even the rarest blood types have helped Rwanda to make massive strides in reducing maternal mortality rates.

“I used to see the drones fly and think they must be mad, until the same drone saved my life.”
Alice Mutimutuje, Mother, Rwanda

Hundreds of families will now watch their kids grow up because when their children contracted malaria, Zipline delivered the blood they needed for a transfusion. A national on-demand drone delivery system, which many once thought impossible, is now routine in a country no one expected would be leading the world in innovation.

In April 2019, Zipline opened our first distribution center in Ghana, a west African democracy of 29 million people. In the first half of this year, we’re expanding to provide most of the country’s population with access to any medical products they need, with four distribution centers spanning from the dense southern regions surrounding Ghana’s capital, Accra, to the remote and arid north of the country.

Zipline by the Numbers

A Service You Can Depend On

A Zipline drone launching at 100 km/h.

Our service has been refined through years of testing and thousands of deliveries. Zipline excels when faced with the real-world challenges of inclement weather, surges in demand, and lifesaving urgency.

500 deliveries/day

Capacity from each distribution center. This is up to one ton of medicine and blood products, daily.

Rain or Shine

Proven to work in extremes: from the hot California desert to the rainy mountains of Rwanda. Zipline’s drones fly through real-world weather, day and night.

A fleet ready to be loaded with packages. The wings (pictured on the right) detach for efficient ground operations.

A package carrying three units of blood drifts to the ground.

30 Minutes

Average time from order placed to delivery. This was once a 5 hour round-trip truck drive for many hospitals.

80 km Service Radius

A single Zipline distribution center can provide instant medical access to millions. For large countries, Zipline builds a network of distribution centers.

1.8 kg Payload

A single flight can deliver up to 3 units of blood. For larger orders, multiple drones are sent at the same time.


Zipline has designed redundant systems into our drone. The drone has two motors and if one stops working, the other kicks in. The same is true for the drone’s power, communications, and navigation systems. On top of all that, the drone has a parachute landing system as a backup to the backup. Watch the Safety Film

Around the World Every 7 Days

Zipline flies more than 40,000 km every week. That’s the equivalent of circumnavigating the planet! We’ve hardened our systems with over 1,000,000 km flown.

In an emergency, a ballistic parachute safely lowers the drone to the ground.
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